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The white seabass, also known as white weakfish or king croaker, is not a seabass at all. It is a member of the croaker family, and it is the largest croaker in the Pacific Ocean. This species can exceed 20 pounds (only in California), with the largest recorded specimen reaching over 5 feet long and 93.1 pounds. They feed primarily on anchovies, sardines, and squid.
This is an infamous fish in the recreational spear-fishing community in southern California. They are a rare find and tend to prefer deeper, murkier waters. Spearing a white seabass is considered quite an accomplishment.
Culinary Tips: White seabass is a versatile fish that is great over the grill with simple seasoning. It can become a bit dry if overcooked though, so marinades are perfect for this species.
Catch Method: Trolling, rod and reel, or gillnet
Sustainability: The white sea bass population has recovered from heavier fishing pressure in the past. Today the population along the central coast of California and in Monterey Bay is believed to be healthy. When caught with hook and line, bycatch is very low.
- MBA Seafood Watch Rating: Good Alternative
- NOAA FishWatch Rating: Not rated